A stay in Epernay, France, cannot be appreciated without a visit to the Maison de Castellane, Champagne House. We decided to go there for you and present you with our favourites, which you absolutely must visit.
Much more than a tour or visit, you will not only discover iconic places while learning the entire history of Champagne, but you will also have the opportunity to taste the best bubbles from the Champagne region, France.
The Maison De Castellane is one of the best-known wine brands in the region and is easily recognisable by its emblematic red cross, which has adorned its bottles since its first vintages.
Who are we? Sarah and Romain, two Spartans who love the Champagne region in all its facets. We are keen to offer you the best activities and tours in the area to make your stay unforgettable by creating exceptional memories.
Today we take you to the Maison De Castellane, located on the Avenue de Champagne, Epernay and with its famous cellars classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Like each of the addresses presented on our blog, De Castellane has been tested and validated by us.
Here we go, take off soon. We’ll take you on a journey to the heart of the De Castellane winery and cellars!
The history of the Maison De Castellane, Epernay
First, the tour begins with a presentation on the history of the Maison De Castellane, but also of the Champagne region and, then discover the wonderful French product that has brought you here today: Champagne!
From the birth of this unique Champagne and its House in 1895 to its entry into the Laurent-Perrier group, through all the critical events in its history, you will discover nearly 130 years of adventures that have enabled the House of De Castellane to shine throughout France and the world today.
Exploring the De Castellane cellars
After the presentation, the guide will take you to tour a few metres underground to discover the cellars. Here you will find stainless steel vats, as well as the entire champagne production process, from the vine to the bottling, including blending and fermentation, and you will become a real little bubble expert.
It is a real journey back in time, discovering the period wine equipment, such as the huge wooden barrels or the vats directly embedded in the walls of the buildings.
Obviously, these tools are no longer used today for practical and technical reasons. But, it is still very interesting to understand how their predecessors went about making the best Champagne vintages.
To continue the exploration, you will reach the chalk pits of the Maison De Castellane, travelling 6 kilometres through the 110 kilometres of cellars built under the town of Épernay. This passage is impressive, both for the number of tunnels dug and the amount of champagne bottles stored here.
Even after several visits, we can confirm that this moment in the cellars is still magical and full of wonder.
The final activity is all about the Castellane champagnes. You will get right to the heart of the House secrets, thanks to an exhibition of a few mistakes that have been made throughout the years. In order to offer exceptional Champagne, it was necessary to lose a lot of bubbles before finally finding the ideal elaboration process for a perfect product.
We give special mention to these reflections because they really allow us to understand how the work and methods have evolved and what challenges the experts of the House have had to face.
The last stage of the visit will be an exhibition of the line, but it is now without workers, as production has moved and it is no longer possible to see the staff at work. But in front of this empty production line, you will be invited to imagine these moments of disgorging or dressing the Champagne.
To end this superb tour in style, you will enjoy a tasting with a glass of the House’s own Champagne, the Brut Croix Rouge, a subtle blend of De Castellane’s iconic Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay.
Visit the De Castellane Tower
You’ll have to climb the 237 steps to get to the top of the tower, but it’s worth it (even if it stings a little on the thighs). Once you’re in front of this magnificent 360° panorama of Épernay and its surrounding vineyards, you won’t regret the effort.
The Tour de Castellane is the highest point of our city of Épernay, overlooking it from 66 meters above. It is the spot to have one of the most beautiful views of this famous French area.
Tour de Castellane is something a little extra special you must visit. You can visit the tower whenever you prefer, but do not miss this beautiful spectacle.
Those who want more, the curious who are looking to discover more, will be delighted to have access to the Museum of Champagne Tradition, the Printing Museum and the Label Room.
Several tour activities are possible, with prices between €15 and €35, depending on your preferences and your choice. We have tested the activities for you in French and English. You can follow this tour with your eyes closed.
- Address : 63 Avenue de Champagne, 51200 Épernay, France
- Contact: 03.26.51.19.19 / firstname.lastname@example.org
- More info: https://www.castellane.com/en/
Note that there is a car park right at the entrance to the Maison De Castellane, the Castellane House, which is very convenient for a road trip in Champagne.
Parking spaces are also very convenient as the visit is 20 minutes walk from the city center. Many people prefer to drive 5 minutes and then reach the most beautiful villages around Epernay or visit the best stops in the Champagne region.
Tip from the locals: If you are only spending the weekend in Epernay, we advise you to visit the Champagne Houses on Sunday and reserve your Saturday to go and meet the independent winegrowers, who will be closed on Sunday. Even if the big Champagne Houses are all very interesting, we encourage you to get to know the small local winemakers, who offer something different and are just as passionate about the Champagne terroir.
We loved this trip to the heart of the Maison De Castellane. We also really appreciated our guide, who, in addition to being very friendly and passionate, gave us clear and concise explanations, which were easy to understand, even without any knowledge of wine.
What is even more enjoyable is that the tour is conducted in a small group, guaranteeing a friendly atmosphere and allowing you to ask the guide a few questions, which he will answer with great pleasure.
If you loved visiting this champagne house, we suggest that you go and visit the most beautiful cellars in Épernay for some sparkling and tasting moments in the heart of the Champagne Capital.
The luckiest ones who have the opportunity to stay a little longer in our beautiful Champagne region should not miss a little visit to Reims, where the cellars of the greatest Houses are also established. For you, we have put together a top 5 list of the most beautiful cellars in Reims, which you should visit without hesitation.
Join us in Epernay for an unforgettable stay. Book your beautiful nights in our comfortable apartments, located a few minutes from the city centre and the houses of Avenue de Champagne.
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